Category Archives: Self

GMEA 2016 Blogger of the Year Award: A Feather to my Cap

Let’s return to its purpose.

I knew the Globe Media Excellence Award (GMEA) even before I wrote my entry. My friends and colleagues in the media have been bagging several awards in different categories since the award’s humble beginnings. I knew of the prestige and the honor of being an awardee since the judges of the entries were reputable in the industry. They are alluring and enticing that you want to work hard for every story you make or produce.

But my winning piece, When There Are No Longer Birds To Watch, I did not intentionally write it as an entry for the award. Its initial purpose was for my experiences, including my struggles within, to be shared. This one, the plight of the Philippine Eagle and all other birds.

Until I decided, after my GMEA awardee friend’s prodding that I sent this entry to this year’s Globe Media Excellence Awards.

And yes, I was adjudged by the esteemed jurors and screeners of the prestigious award-giving body the title, “Blogger of the Year” because of this entry. As what I have said, the birds added a feather to my cap.

The truth is, I am not. I am not as prolific as other bloggers around, those who post as many OOTDs as they can in a week or in a day. In fact, I am a savage procrastinator, tolerant to my sleeping indulgence and sometimes staling every single brilliant idea I find while taking a bath. I am not the kind that goes to every single event or know the latests of everything.

The thing is, I don’t settle for “blogging for blogging’s sake”. I always end up writing thousand-word entries, having the ennui if people would even care to read it. It is a struggle to fight for other’s attention. But I wrote it anyway.

So let’s return to its purpose.
I am resharing this post not to brag that I am the Blogger of the Year, not even for people to know if I really deserved to be called one, but I am resharing this to go back to its sole purpose, perhaps the ingredient, the winning feather the judges had found.

The title “Blogger of the Year” has its own expiration. I will no longer be that blogger after a year or so. So I was lucky enough that I wrote it for a different, perhaps noble reason. At least, when it expires, I am still grounded.

So I am resharing this, to justify its existence, the reason why it came to being.

I just wanted to tell my stories, my musings. Turned out, I had touched, I can and will be touching more lives. This will be my motivation to share the transformative tales of humanity.

Thank you for Globe Telecommunication for giving this accolade. This will be part of my blog’s history. Special acknowledgment to the Philippine Eagle Foundation (Official) who inspired this post. Thank you to all who congratulated me. I owe you a lot. And lastly, thanks ahead to the people who will dare to read this.

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Congratulations to me!!!

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Thanks to Davao Digital Influencers for the regard!

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Check the post: When There Are No Longer Birds To Watch

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Radio Jock 101: 7 Basic Things I Learned in my Radio Jock Stint

My desire to be a radio disc jockey was once a Facebook status in my early Mass Communication years. It is only until I was hired as a Multimedia/Web/Social Media Manager last October 2015 in a local radio station here in Davao City that I was able to fulfill that dream. I was under the news department but seeped into the entertainment department courageously just to be a DJ. Thanks to DJ Clea. Without her help and guidance and the permission of the station, I wouldn’t able to taste how to become one.20151112_170215

My DJ-ing stint is not long enough to be considered myself professional or expert though but I have learned a lot during that short span of time. Thus, it is but proper to call it “basic” and could be the start-up skills for the neophyte or budding DJs like me. Also, these do not debunk the I-learned-these-skills-in-my-radio-class idea. In fact, practicing it makes me feel authorized enough to share what I learned to those aspiring jocks.

It can be categorized into something technical knowledge and an interpersonal one. However, you can fully understand it through practice. But no worries, I want to share this handy basic tips and skill you can bring the moment you decide to begin your radio journey.

Note: I believe that radio business in other parts of the countries is quite different and may vary from culture to culture. This knowledge is based mostly a Philippine radio station perspective.

WIDEN YOUR MUSIC LIBRARY

To be in the radio industry, especially FM is to deal with music. (And I guess one of the reasons why you want to be a DJ is you love listening to music.) As a DJ, you have to be knowledgeable about the music of different periods, from 80’s hits to the current jams. There were a lot of AHA moments during my mentoring with DJ Clea when she introduces me to a song I know except the title and its artist. And she admitted it is normal. What I usually do is to research the song on the web using the lyrics. And to be honest, it is doubly difficult if you are trying to figure out a song which has undecipherable lyrics or just music or melody. EDM or club music is one.

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90s-artists

You should also be familiar with various genres, even metal rock. Our programs are based on genres. My debut program is folk rock and country. I play the songs of Bread, Lobo, Cat Stevens, Lobo, Kenny Rogers, James Taylor, Don Mclean, Elton John, Eric Clapton, Simon and Garfunkel, Freddie Aguilar, Asin, Coritha, Bayang Barrios, Maan Chua, Joey Ayala among others. But sometimes, DJ Clea would allow me to play mellow or slow rock like Christopher Cross or Survivor, Reo Speedwagon, or Firehouse at the last quarter of my show. So if you are not familiar, you might mistakenly insert songs that do not belong to the genres required by the program. However, it depends on your program format. You don’t necessarily have to like it but least you are aware of it, especially those hits and those well-loved by the people of any ages.

Aside from that, know also the songs’ tempo. It could be fast (usually dance or pop or club), slow usually love songs) and MOR (middle of the road, not too fast, not too slow). This would usher you to the next skill.

Lastly, keep updated with the songs. List them as you hear them. Know the artists of different times and what people love to hear. The key here is to listen more and research more.

BEATMATCH

Everywhere I go, I always have earphones plugged in my ear and listen to other stations. I was able to observe how their programming goes on and most especially what songs they play and how it is playlisted. And ironically, I can say that many disc jockeys fail at this. This is the foundation of a mix.

This is quite challenging to illustrate. I’ll try my best. Remember the tempos? What you should keep in mind is that songs having the same tempos or beats should or best listened to if they follow each other. In moments that you have to escalate the speed and mood of your playlist, choose songs that have tempo not far from the one you played first.

The parts of a song that matters here are the beginning and the ending tunes. There are two types of tunes in a song, the fade or the gradual and the drop or the sudden or definite beat to punctuate a song.

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Based on my experiences, I find it best to put next to each other songs that have similar intro and outro beats. My preference is If the song ends in a fade, it is good to follow it with a song starts with a fade. Same goes with drops. I am also fond of arranging songs having quite the same melody or sound or instrument. Acoustic follow by an acoustic or electronic next to an electronic and some of them belonged to different genres. For example, Katy Perry’s Roar sounds nearly identical with Sara Bareilles’ Brave. Although, DJing software like OTS DJ has an auto beat match feature, meaning they crossfades the tails and the heads of the song for you. So the beat matching is enhanced by great song choices.

In other words, my formulas are based on:

1. Instrument (acoustic, piano, electronic, etc.)
2. Beat (fast, slow, MOR, etc.)
3. Genre (Pop, Ballad, Rock, Folk Rock, Dance, RnB, )
4. Beginning and End (fade or drop)

However, there is no limit to experimentation. Just the right mix.

Why is it important? You don’t want to cut the mood of your listeners. Make sure your playlist is not a rollercoaster ride. The transition should not be obvious, and if it is, at least it is smooth. If you pull it off effectively, they wouldn’t notice it is the next song they are listening to. It makes them enjoy it.

DO’S AND DON’TS IN PLAYLISTING

Playlisting is the manner of organizing songs in a program clock or hour. Briefly, it is creating a playlist. DJ Clea told me that, ideally, there are more or less 15 songs in an hour but it can be cut if you have commercials, adlibs and breakers and stingers within the program clock.

From what I have learned in my radio class and practiced in a short-lived stint, a huge no-no in playlisting is PUTTING TWO OR MORE SONGS OF THE SAME ARTIST IN THE SAME HOUR.

ADLIB

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Before I proceed to the nitty-gritty of adlib, I want to let you know first that the station where I worked caters audience in C, D, and E bracket. Ad-libbing in CDE radio stations is quite different from AB radio stations. In the AB stations, only a quick and concise speaking is required. However, whether it is AB or CDE, adlibbing is very challenging.

Adlib is spontaneous speaking on air. This is where the glam of the radio personality comes in. It is one of the motivations of freshmen in the communication courses to enter into the radio industry, the voice modulation, the projection and such. But how did I learn them? Practice.

First, you should have something to say. As what DJ Clea shared to me, “You are behind the mic not because you have to say something but because you have something to say.” The basic elements that should be present in an adlib are the time, the call sign, name of the station, the program, and your (DJ) name. The audience should know what station and to whom they are listening to. Plug your text line for greetings and requests.

Example:

Our time is ____. You are listening to 105.9 Balita FM. Welcome to the first-hour drive of our program Best of Folk Rock and Country Sunday. This is DJ Amber and I will be with you for two hours of playing your favorite folk rock and country songs, from 12 noon down 2 in the afternoon. If you have songs in mind, don’t hesitate to text me through this number______. For our next song, here’s _________.

Be as creative as you can every time you say your intros and extros so as not to bore your audience. State them in different ways, juggle them taking care not to confuse those who are listening. For the adlibs in the middle of the hour, some radio jocks read light news or tips, throw poll questions or topics, read greetings and text messages, or just brief, snappy song introduction, again, depending on the program. This one also calls for creativity and imaginations and ounces of humor if you have.

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The voice and projection? Be confident with the sound you create. Record yourself and listen to it until you get used to it. It takes time to develop until you find the right projection unless an expert coaches you. What matter is that you are confident with what you are saying and you’ll be able to say it confidently. The listeners may not see you but they can sense your nerve wrack in your voice. They can hear the laziness or disinterest or tiredness in your voice and you want to avoid channeling that to them. One of your primary purposes is to uplift their mood. They can determine how you feel just by listening to you. Again, practice.

Most importantly, channel good will. Say something good, something positive, and motivational and uplifting, something useful and something they can learn alongside with humor and entertainment. Good example is that of Nicole Hyala and Chris Tsuper in Tambayan of 90.7 Love Radio Manila. Their program is mostly talk, as far as I know.

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And again, it depends on your program format.

PLEASE YOUR LISTENERS

Your listeners are diverse in so many aspects such as age and status and thus, their tastes when it comes to music. Know what these people want to hear. Know the hits of the times and mix them right to be able to strike a balance. It is easier said than done though because you also have your own biases. There are songs you like but are alien to your audience’s ear. Or songs you despise but are their earworm. Despite that, it is them you should consider. TIP: To be safe, classics are timeless.

BE WILLING TO LEARN

Above were just technical know-hows. And you can never adapt them if you are resistant to learning. Before you will be listened to, you should first listen to those ahead of you. During the first few board work, you will still have a lot of mistakes and palpak and semplang. It is natural. DJ Clea just laughs at me whenever I push wrong buttons or say something weird or stupid because she also does that sometimes. Don’t be afraid to be corrected. It is the only way to learn.

SOAR THE AIRWAVES BY KEEPING FEET ON THE GROUND

DJing can be an instant stardom. Your parents, siblings, friends and neighbors would be proud to hear you on the airwaves. And when you are able to please few avid listeners, you will gain fans or should I say new friends other than your squads at home. In my case, there are those who go to our station just to see or meet us or bring us something. You become a radio personality. And some people will look up to you, find for you, and commend you for a job well done. It happened to me. But it doesn’t mean you are already above them. You should keep your character and values intact.

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Our avid listener Melanie brought us so much food! It didn’t happen once though.
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Feeling celebs with DJ Chino

Lastly, LOVE WHAT YOU’RE DOING

The enjoyment and the good feeling while doing the job will greatly influence the whole mood of your board work. It resonates to the songs you play. Should I explain more?

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I can still remember my first month of board work, the jitters-excitement mixed disrupted my sleeping patterns. They render me restless. And I still have it except that excitement weighs heavier before than now. I owe all this experience to my mentor DJ Clea who equipped me little and thrown me in the battle right away, making me learn all this on my own. And of course, to the station who entrusted me some of their programs. I feel so privileged. My DJing experience was as memorable as the music I played.

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Glam shot with DJ Clea!

It’s been a while since I posted on my blog. For the past days, I was going through a lot and in fact, one of them is the temporary shutting down of the radio station where I am working. The struggle of letting go of the one you love doing has never been this real, especially if it is one of your dream careers.

Heartfelt thanks to those who made me a part of the industry that spoiling the people of their innate love for music. I will never leave with nothing. And so, just how I was shown generosity, I am also doing it in return. They say, “you can not give what you don’t have.” I say, I am sharing what is given to me. So here it is. I hope you enjoy and learn something.

For those who have dreamed to be a radio jock, for those who consider music as life, you can’t apply all these if you haven’t lifted your butt and going after it. So try your luck. There are still so much to radio than meets the ears like program clock and all. Who knows, you might just complete someone’s day with the music you play.

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Thank you for the opportunities 105.9 Balita FM. I will never forget that you’ve existed and formed another family with you. ‘Til then.

12814304_1148278071858059_6180503202802793476_nIf you have ideas you want to share, add, please feel free to leave a comment. I’ll appreciate it. I hope you learned something from this. Thank you for stopping by. This has been DJ Amber, signing off! Happy DJing!!

21 Life Lessons from Mitch Albom’s Tuesdays with Morrie You Might Be Needing Right Now

I read Mitch Albom’s Tuesdays with Morrie few months ago. It was an ebook stagnant in my phone for years. I was bored at that moment so I scanned my phone until I found it waiting to be read. I read it to kill time. I read it to lull me to sleep. But ended up screen capping the portions  filled with valuable lessons I wasn’t able to resist. They just hit me to the gut.

SPOILER:

Morrie Schwartz was Mitch Albom’s professor in college. After Mitch graduated, his teacher developed an amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), a Lou Gehrig’s disease which Mitch described as a “brutal, unforgiving illness of the neurological system.” It was terminal and there was no known cure. It means Morrie will die. Because of that, Morrie was admitted in his home. And Mitch would visit his well-loved professor every Tuesday. They would spend time together talking about love, life and death and many other things. It is from their conversations where these inspiring words sprung.

I know most of you have read it. And I agree with your positive reviews of this book. You even recommended this as a must-read. But it takes an effort to scan again to find those inspiring words. So I am taking down some of them for the benefit of those who need them and those who haven’t read it yet, especially those who might need some motivation right now. It may change the way you see life, like me.

1. Tension of Opposites. Life is a series of pulls back and forth. You want to do one thing but you are bound to do something else. Something hurts you yet you know it shouldn’t. You take certain things for granted, even when you know you should never take anything for granted. A tension of opposites, like a pull on a rubber band. And most of us live somewhere in the middle. Which side wins? Love wins. Love always wins.

2. The culture we have does not make people feel good about themselves. And you have to be strong enough to say if the culture doesn’t work, don’t buy it.

3. So many people walk around with a meaningless life. They seem half-asleep, even when they’re busy doing things they think are important. This is because they’re chasing the wrong things. The way you get meaning into your life is to devote yourself to loving others, devote yourself to your community around you, and devote yourself to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning.

4. The most important thing in life is to learn how to give out love, and let it come in. We think we don’t deserve love, we think if we let it in we’ll become too soft. But a wise man named Levine said it right. He said, “Love is the only rational act.”

5. Sometimes you cannot believe what you see, you have to believe what you feel. And if you are going to have other people trust you, you must feel that you can trust them, too – even when you’re in the dark. Even when you are falling.

6. Everyone knows they are going to die, but nobody believes it. If we did, we would do things differently. To know you’re going to die, and to be prepared for it at any time. That’s better. That way, you can actually be more involved in your life while you’re living.

7. Once you learn how to die, you learn how to live.

8. Learn to detach. But detachment doesn’t mean you don’t let the experience penetrate you. On the contrary, you let it penetrate you fully. That is how you are able to leave it. Take any emotion – love for a woman, or grief for a love one, or what I’m going through, fear and pain from a deadly illness. If you don’t allow yourself to go all the way through them – you can never get to being detached, you’re too busy being afraid. You’re afraid of the pain, you’re afraid of the grief. You’re afraid of the vulnerability that loving entails. But by throwing yourself into these emotions, by allowing yourself to dive in, all the way, over your head even, you experience them fully and completely. You know what pain is. You know what love is. You know what grief is. And only then can you say, ‘All right. I have experienced that emotion. I recognize that emotion, now I need to detach from that emotion for a moment.

9. I embrace aging. It’s very simple. As you grow, you learn more. If you stayed at twenty-two, you’d always be as ignorant as you were at twenty-two. Aging is not just decay, you know. It is growth. It’s more than the negative that you’re going to die, it’s also the positive that you understand you’re going to die, and that you live a better live because of it.

10. You know what, people are so hungry for love that they were accepting for substitutes. They were embracing material things and expecting a sort of hug back. But it never works. You can’t substitute material things for love or for gentleness or for tenderness or for a sense of comradeship.

11. Money is not a substitute for tenderness, and power is not a substitute for tenderness. I can tell you, as I’m sitting here dying, when you most need it, neither money nor power will give you the feeling you’re looking for, no matter how much of them you have.

12. The truth is, you don’t get satisfaction from those things. You know what really gives satisfaction? Offering others what you have to give. I don’t mean money. I mean your time. Your concern. Your storytelling.

13. If you are trying to show off for people at the top, forget it. They will look down at you anyhow. And if you’re trying to show off for people at the bottom, forget it. They will only envy you. Status will get you nowhere. Only an open heart will allow you to float equally between everyone.

14. Do the kinds of things that come from the heart. When you do, you won’t be dissatisfied, you won’t be envious, you won’t be longing for somebody else’s things. On the contrary, you’ll be overwhelmed with what comes back.

15. And love is how you stay alive, even after you’re gone.

16. There are few rules I know to be true about love and marriage: If you don’t respect the other person, you’re gonna have a lot of trouble. If you don’t know how to compromise, you’re gonna have a lot of trouble. If you can’t talk openly about what goes on between you, you’re gonna have a lot of trouble. And if you don’t have a common set of values in life, you’re gonna have a lot of trouble. Your values must be alike. And the biggest one of those values? Your belief in the importance of your marriage.

17. In the beginning of life, when we are infants, we need others to survive, right? And at the end of life, you need others to survive, right? But here’s the secret: in between, we need others as well.

18. As long as we can love each other, and remember the feeling of love we had, we can die without ever really going away. All the love you created is still there. All the memories are still there. You live on – in the hearts of everyone you touched and nurtured while you were here.

19. Here’s what I mean by building your own subculture. I don’t mean you disregard every rule of your community. I don’t go around naked, for example. I don’t run through red lights. The little things, I can obey. But the big things – how we think, what we value – those you must choose yourself. You can’t let anyone – or any society determine those for you.

20. No matter where you live, the biggest defect we human beings have is our shortsightedness. We don’t see what we could be. We should be looking at our potential, stretching ourselves into everything we become. But if you’re surrounded by people who say ‘I want mine now,’ you end up with a few people with everything and a military to keep the poor ones from rising up and stealing it.

21. Invest in the human family. Invest in people. Build a little community of those you love and who love you.

Morrie Schwartz is brimming with wisdom. Every single statement is an eye-opener. I didn’t notice I finished the book. It didn’t kill my time. It didn’t fall asleep. In fact, it awakened me to a new perspective of life. It made me get the most out of my time instead.

Which among the pieces of advice struck you the most? Which of these did you need right now?

It Rains Every Night

Kapag umuulan bumubuhos ang langit
Sa `yong mga mata
Kapag mayroong unos ay aagos ang luha
Ngunit di ka mag-iisa kaibigan.

Tag-Ulan, After Image

A hit of After Image’s Tag-ulan resounding from the stereo of the jeepney I am aboard seemingly served as the night’s anthem.

It was raining hard that night. Lighting flashed as if I was smiling. It tells me to say ‘cheese’ but I did otherwise. The woman beside me is afraid of the rain. The cover of the window was not locked and strong wind caused it to flap, allowing droplets of rain touch her cotton sweater. The vehicle was full. The passengers are forced to shrink. But this woman clad in a dark yellow sweater just keeps moving, trying to close the makeshift plastic window cover, avoiding to get wet.

I wonder, why is she afraid to get wet? She knew it is raining. And she should anticipate it. She was ready for the cold wind to kiss her skin. She, in fact, wore a sweater. She should felt the coldness even before she went out, even before the rain made her sweater wet. And she should not be afraid of it.

One by one, passengers got off the jeep. Leaving. You can’t ask them to say. Not even rain can stop them. They have to brave it because they have arrived at where they belong. Soon, you’ll arrive where you should be, even if it rains every night.

Getting Through The Toughest Test (with bonus hacks and leakages)

Yes and no. Reactive and nonreactive. Positive and negative. It will only give you two answers but you will definitely hold your breath in between the process.

I have been thinking about taking that test long before one of my friends asked me about it. She was both hesitant and eager to know her status. She was prompted after her Korean boyfriend confessed that he had encounters with few professional sex workers in Cebu before they met. Meanwhile, I also had several hook-ups but my last was two months ago from the moment I was writing this. After that, I did not take risks anymore.

I was really determined to know mine but I didn’t have the luxury of time and timing to visit the reproductive health center. Luckily, she opened up the idea. I already have a trusted company in doing this, I told myself.

But she was afraid. She constantly asked me if it would be shameful if people will see them enter the center. I said, of course not. In fact, everyone is encouraged to take the test. I told her that it would be better if we know our status before it is too late.

I thought, damn all the self-righteous. Damn all those who think it is a shame to take the test. Though it can be equated to active sex life, but it can also mean that you are taking good care of yourself by checking on your health. It is no different from checking if your heart, lungs, kidney, or other organs other than what is being used in sex are in good condition.

Morality? Yeah. Perhaps. But it has been a reality of life. It cannot be prevented. There are billions of people in the world doing the “thing” at the same time. You cannot stop them in just a flick of a finger or a blink of an eye. On the other note, how can you change your life or at least change your perspective if you don’t know your status? That was what I was thinking.

And so after I brainwashed her, we head to the center.

During that time, there were several people sitting in the sofa waiting for results but from different tests. Before we went to the clinic, we filled-up few forms with personal information. After that, our forms were given to Mam E., our counselor. Mam E then brought us to a room for the pre-counseling. At first, I felt strange because I have this notion that when you are counseled, you will be spanked with sermons for the immorality you have done in your life. It was in complete contrary to my belief.

The pre-counseling is intended to educate you about the virus, the transmission, its effects, your life cycle once you get infected, the diseases you might get aside from the syndrome, the remedies to prolong your life (in case) and caters your question. In other words, you are being readied.

Once it is done, the more intimate second phase of the process takes place. You will be asked to confess about your encounters. She throws you legitimate questions that will make you somehow feel guilty…or not. It depends how you take it.

You really don’t have to worry because at the bottom of the questionnaire, they will sign a confidentiality clause. They vow to keep your information between you and them. One of the question was asking for the number of encounters you had since (This is a bonus question. At least you can be prepared to count your encounters before you take the second phase and give out honest answers). After I responded, out of curiosity, I asked “Were there people who had more encounters than mine?” She looked at me for a while and said, “Confidential.” I immediately let go a sigh of assurance.

After the interview phase, time to face the needle. The doctor took enough blood from my arm and gave me a code so they can track my blood sample. It would take an hour before you get the result so I and my friend had a stroll for a while.

When we finally returned, my blood raced out of nervousness, at the same time fear of “what ifs”. A positive answer can turn the wheels around. This is the test you would regret to top. Mam E. privately handed me the folder paper. She allowed me to unfold it myself. My heart beat fast. That time, it felt like the oxygen is getting out of the room. Slowly, I read aloud the words written in bold, proud letters. NONREACTIVE. In other words, negative.

I was speechless. My friend is also negative. Not only a thing to rejoice but a reminder to value life…even more. And responsibility over it.

I will not be telling you about what Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), how it develops into Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), and Sexually-Transmitted Disease (STD) are and all its fuss. I will leave it to Mam E. and her team. I am giving you an overview of the testing process so will not fear or hesitate to take the test. If you have questions, ask it from the expert.

You don’t have to worry about the confidentiality of my result. I am negative. Just like you, or at least you think you are.

Yes or no. Reactive or nonreactive. Positive or negative. How can you change your life, start again or at least change your perspective if you don’t know your status? You’ll only know if you take the test I took, the toughest so far.

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To be tested is voluntary. If you felt like taking it, you can go to your nearest reproductive health centers. For my Davao audience, you can visit the Reproductive Health and Wellness Center at Jacinto St., Davao City, just behind the Ateneo de Davao University. Check their Facebook Page for more information and inquiries.

You can also check The Project Red Ribbon Care Management Foundation, Inc. (TRR), a non stock, non-profit foundation registered under the Securities and Exchange Commission of the Philippines, an HIV and AIDS advocacy foundation composed of advocates, supporters and persons living with HIV (PLHIV).

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Ordinary Letter to my Most Valued Dearest

September 30, 2013

Yulie Joung

71492 Un Nouveau Village

Dearest Bonroe,

We were lying on the grass, staring at the cerulean sky. You took a photo of every cloud that would pass by, looked at me and kissed my cheek. Then whispered “I love you.”

Suddenly, the grass turned into a bed cushion, sky into a ceiling with dangling cobwebs. And you, into a soft pillow and the whispers, a music from the radio. You haunted me again. Why can’t you just be mine? 

Almost every day, I lie in my bed thinking of you, thinking of what could it be if I have you, how would it feel if I’m with you.

I have believed in the law of attraction. It said I have to imagine what I wanted, with a doubtless heart and it will come. It said further that I have to create a picture in my mind as if I already have it. I do it. Almost every time. Probably, the universe is having a hard time planning out how will we meet and become together.

This is so funny but I have thought of this every vacation, when it is time to go back to our province, to home. In my daydreams, you were with me, sitting side by side on the bus seat. I am on the window side. Your cam, hanged around your neck, is as impatient as you are to take every breathtaking landscape you see. While the bus went on the long-winding road formed on the  mountain cliff’s edge, you are fascinated by the exhilarating views. You did what you have loved to do. You can’t get enough of the panorama at every other end of the clicks.

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Photo: Julius Voltaire Villanueva

We arrived at our place. I let you taste the province life. I brought you to the places where nature brags its beauty. The smell of the breeze, the lives of the people and everything you want to capture and write about. Apparently, if we’d become lovers or friends at least, I will be your most supportive companion. I won’t ask for your too much attention if you are too focused on the things that you have loved first. I will love you as much as you love your passion.

Yeah! Daydreaming about you. It is a desperate thing I know. But I don’t really call it as such. I call it as “taking-the-risk-to-achieve-my-dream.” You might think I’m just wasting my time dreaming about you when I could dream of many other things more than you. One question, why did you dream of the dreams you have today when you can have other things to dream of, perhaps better than what you have now? Your answer will be mine as well. I have dreams other than you. It’s just that, you are a dream in another aspect of me.

You might be also wondering why a person or a stranger like me who only knew you virtually and haven’t been with you for a longer time actually felt something special towards you. You might be bringing up reasons like “Why me? I’m not handsome. I’m not like this and that..I don’t have like this and like that..”and whatever. Shut Up! (Rude me :D)

I ADMIRE YOU! If you have reasons, I have mine too. I like you because:

You are kind;

You are smart, adorable, and sweet;

You are socially-concern;

You are passionate in your passion and you love art;

You are so ideal;

I just love you, no other reasons.

It is so absurd. How can someone like me actually assert that I love you when in fact, I haven’t met you yet in the first place. (Mind-Stuttered) I  just read your posts, comments, statuses and everything, and unnoticeably fall in love with them, with you. Call me a stalker. I call myself, INTELLIGENCE AGENT (:DDD). I don’t care because this is where I knew you.

Have you experienced having a relationship before? With so many people that have admired you so much (which includes me), I’m pretty sure you got interested in one. Nevertheless, whoever it may be, they are so lucky. They got a full-packaged man, more than enough. For them, getting into your life is just easy. They met you face-to-face, talked to you, heard you sing, saw your handwriting, held your hand, touched your cheek, dined with you, laughed with you and everything that I WISHED I have experienced with you too.

But everything is just a daydream… Law of attraction is only a conditioning that works in consonance with the cosmic order, a standard set by the universe.

Who am I for you? I’m just a stranger. I’m just ordinary, average. You want something exciting and interesting. We lived in two different and opposing lifestyle. We have so many thing in not-common. And I’m not sure what this post can do to me. But as for now, one thing is for sure I have released SOME of it.

I Hope. I Wish. I Promise.

Lovingly yours,

Rogue 

_____________________________

I have loved only thrice, all my life, as far as I know. This “letter” was for the first of three. It was when I can no longer contain the feeling that I wrote this. But I was too obsessed until I confessed for good. He was able to read it. I will leave the next thing that happened as a mystery.

Originally written on my Tumblr account: Extroverted Intro-Version

Bobbi Petalurca

The Beauty of Firsts

An old cliche but valuable adage says “A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.”

Firsts are the most exciting things one can experience. You don’t know what to expect. You don’t know if your expectations will meet the reality. But no matter what, it is the element of surprise that gives your first its essence and color.

I have been planning to do this. But the struggle to find the most appropriate and appealing words for you is too real. I don’t know what to tell you. I don’t know if you’d like what I would say (or write).

But after the course of time, I realized, I have been surrounded with a lot of restrictions for the past years of my life. My writings were curbed by disciplines. I studied a media-related course and sooner got hired in a media outlet. I write news, apparently bound with standards and dos and don’ts. For a neophyte media person, I just can’t easily experiment on bending these rules and embellish a touch of artistry on every news item. Though possible but better safe than condemned.

And so I created a blog, a personal blog. This would be my avenue to break free. It is here that I would cut the strings that made my writings a bondage. It would not harm if I dip my feet on the river of Styx except I’d become immortal. Freedom is limited but creativity is infinite.

I used to write poems and short stories. But that was years ago. I have to confess. This is not my first blog. I have created blogs before but failed to sustain it, until I can no longer access it because of forgotten email, username, and passwords. I would re-post them here, of course. And now, I am starting another one.

Let this be, if you don’t mind me calling it, my “first.” Allow me to share my thoughts, encounters, aha-moments, earworms, self-realizations, experiments, among others.

(Takes a deep breath)

May this first post pave way for more journeys with you. Feel free to tell me what you think too.

Bobbi Petalurca